A parking fines judge branded Leeds city centre road markings “confusing and misleading” as the council lost a 10-month legal battle.
Adjudicator Clifton Barker made the comments after Ferrybridge man David Radcliffe took Leeds City Council to a Traffic Penalty Tribunal over a disputed ticket.
Mr Radcliffe, of Pontefract Road, was fined £70 for parking in a bay on South Parade shortly after 10pm last August 26.
The council claimed the bay, which had road markings indicating it was ‘loading only’ during the day, also had signs showing it became a taxi rank at night.
But Mr Radcliffe, 43, argued the road markings broke Department for Transport guidelines and suggested restrictions only applied during the day.
Mr Barker agreed. Quashing the fine, he said: “I have reached the conclusion that the appellant is correct and the carriageway is incorrectly marked.
“I accept the appellant’s contention that the marking of this dual-purpose bay is not in accordance with the Department for Transport’s statement and that, as it stands, it is confusing and misleading.”
Mr Radcliffe said the decision could have implications for other city centre bays marked in the same way.
He said: “The council has refunded my ticket but now they just want to brush it under the carpet. They are ripping people off.
“They shouldn’t be allowed to get away with it.”
The council said another adjudicator had ruled the markings were acceptable. A spokeswoman said: “South Parade is a busy city centre street and the signage at the parking bay used by Mr Radcliffe clearly states that it should only be used as a loading bay during the day and a taxi rank at night, not for public parking.
“We have previously had a judgment stating that the parking regulations were correct in this bay, so it is unclear which interpretation is correct.
“Since the judgment we are now seeking legal advice on the interpretation of the guidelines.
“Any changes to the current regulations following this advice do not apply retrospectively, so previous parking fines were issued correctly.
“In the meantime we will continue to enforce the existing parking regulations at this parking bay.”